New Delhi: Hundreds of migrant labourers on Tuesday morning gathered on the streets of Surat in Gujarat pelted stones at the office of Diamond Bourse in protest that they were forced to work amid the coronavirus pandemic and lockdown. They also pelted stones at policemen who were trying to contain the situation. Also Read - Preksha Mehta's Suicide Update: Father Says She Was Upset Over Lockdown And Was Never Pressurised For Marriage
At least five persons were detained from the protest gathering. The migrants demanded that they be sent to their respective native places. Also Read - Unprecedented Measures Taken For Unprecedented Crisis, Centre Tells Supreme Court During Hearing on Migrants' Plight
As it happened, police reached the location as soon as they were informed about the protest gathering that had turned violent. When they tried to contain the situation and enforce a lockdown in the area, the labourers started throwing stones at them too. One policeman was severely injured in the incident. Also Read - Viral Video: Family Picnic Turns Sour as 12-Year-Old Boy Comes Out of Woods Followed by Bear, Here's What Happened Next
“We sent a PCR van in the area after coming to know that people were roaming around and not adhering to the lockdown norms. When the police asked locals to stay indoors, some of them got angry and started throwing stones at the policemen,” Surat Deputy Commissioner of Police RP Barot said.
Migrant workers have been agitating in Surat since the past few weeks as they demand arrangements made by the government to facilitate their safe return home.
From the time the lockdown was imposed on March 25, many migrant workers and labourers across the country have been walking on foot without food or shelter and getting stranded at state borders in an effort to reach their hometown.
The issue was also brought up to the attention of the Supreme Court. Hearing a petition on the same, the apex court asked the Centre to give a response within a week on the steps and effrts beig taken for migrants during the nationwide lockdown.